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  1. #1
    Mikew's Avatar
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    Default Hosting on the cloud, who is already doing it?

    Few month ago, we had been advised to host on the cloud and we kind of took our time to think through the question.
    Now we actually think to move toward this option however I would like to know if anyone here is already hosting on the cloud and what platform would you recommend.
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    Hosting on a cloud is really NOT very much different from hosting not in a cloud.

    However some web hosting companies want you to THINK it is way different.

    PC Mag defined it as
    In the simplest terms, cloud computing means storing and accessing data and programs over the Internet instead of your computer's hard drive. The cloud is just a metaphor for the Internet.
    http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2372163,00.asp

    Even the wiki suggests the term has been around since the 70's, it's just that hosting companies started jumping on the term as a sales tool.
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_computing

    Whether you have a vps or shared server it can often be running in a VM (virtual machine) that is spun up in a cloud environment even if it is not listed or sold that way.

    The term "cloud" is really just a term that has is a server farm, that often allows for active spinning up and more freely moved VM's (virtual machines)

    Sometimes the vm's will be self contained (meaning the data is within the vm and sometimes the data will be stored on an array on different hardware. In either case if the vm fails or the hardware it was on, the vm can be spun up on other hardware, sometimes with zero downtime.

    Hosting within a cloud environment that is NOT contained within a vm, could often just mean shared hosting that is on a server farm (or multiple nodes) for more redundancy, so you should always thoroughly investigate what exactly is being offered over and above what buzz words they use to make the sale.

    If a term such as "Well your instance of web server is this, xxxx" then most likely it is a virtual machine or virtual instance. Whether it is a vm running on VMWare, Hyper-V, Zen, Parallels, VirtualBox or whatever doesn't really matter.

    One of the only versions of hosting that should not be referred to as being in the cloud is a dedicated server,although depending on the hosting environment, could offer load balancing or redundancy or failover in a cloud along side of the dedicated server.

    Rick
    Universal4


    The above statements I have made are based partially on opinion as well as fact (a few that many hosts might not want to admit) and I tried to simplify the explanations a little, but much can be learned from firing up your favorite search engine and reading more. Be sure to pick through and overlook some of the hype, since the term has been around for so long so many of the articles found will be slanted toward those selling cloud services.

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  4. #3
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    Really heard a lot of good things about it and according to my host it should get our sites much more faster compared to now.
    That's surely all the info I needed to learn more and make a decision.
    I really appreciate your help on this one. Thank a lot. Thumb Up
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  5. #4
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    Cloud is just another marketing gimmick. Another sound term that sells. I bet that is why you were told to swicth to "cloud", which really is usually nothing special just some VPS. But usually also way overpriced.

    If you have a problem with performance: tune or upgrade your own server or software. If you really have need for covering spikes in traffic, it is not you, who have to decide about that, but someone really competent. Someone who understands that the performance of your websites is really poor and no other things can help.

    This whole cloud bullshit now pretty annoys me.
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    I am kinda glad I did not use the word "bullshit" first.....lol

    Rick
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    hah yes I was going to reply that everyone with a web server hosts in "the cloud" already...

    If you're being told to move for performance reasons then you might want to reconsider. Last year we were forced to move from a dedicated server that we had been running on for 5+ years due to the closure of our web host. We moved to a service that runs on Amazon cloud-based infrastructure (for several other reasons, not because it is "the cloud") and there has been no improvement in page serving speed. In fact if I had to call it, I would say it is marginally slower than the 5 year old dedicated server. But really the difference is so small that no-one would notice.

    There are so many things you can do to improve your page serving speed without resorting to moving servers. If you're running a php based site, look into in memory caching with memcache or redis, or you could look into installing a reverse proxy like Varnish. Due to the hassle involved in moving everything that really should only be done as a last resort when all else fails (assuming your current host is reliable).

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    Before doing too much with trying to installing caching etc (which may or may not be compatible with your hosting) you need to understand more about exactly what kind of hosting you are on, and if there "is" a performance issue, find out where exactly the bottle neck is.

    If you are using wordpress or other database type of cms, and there is a bottle neck with the web server talking to the sql server, caching will likely not help. If the sql is on local host and it is over-loaded, then the databases may have to be moved, or your shared plan may no longer be enough, or someone else on the shared server is eating up bandwith and cpu/memory overhead.

    I could probably list 6 or 8 or 10 other factors why (in a shared server situation) that the nic on the server is being overloaded such as bandwith allocation reaching at or near peak, or that bandwith itself is being throttled.

    Like some have said, moving is not always in your best interest, and if in fact the decision to move is based on performance, choosing the right move in advance sometimes takes more careful planning then just jumping to another host that "claims" you will get better performance with their latest greatest cloud offering.

    Rick
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    Lol, one opf my hosting companies called me and said the new cloud is the future, and gave me reasons why. I said wow that sounds likke the old VMware we used to run a long time ago.. after a few seconds he responds well it is VMware.... so new name old technology but really not a bad choice if you use dedicated servers. Most shared servers are more than enough for most of us though.
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    Yea VMWare has gone through MANY changes and in fact it's difficult to even find some of the downloads needed for the "old vmware" since it has been deprecated for quite a while.

    Now they call it vSphere (formally ESXI) and vCloud lol.

    I do disagree with one point you stated though, a dedicated server sold as a dedicated server, should be just that, an instance on it's own "dedicated" hardware. Now it's ok to back that up in a cloud infrastructure or load balanced on another server for redundancy, but there should be truth in the sales portion.

    Dedicated should mean dedicated to a single instance and not shared with anyone, and the nature of the term "cloud" does not fit within that description. A dedicated server in a cloud is a VPS.

    Rick
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    As others already mentioned, we are all already hosting in the cloud. What some hosting companies DO provide is a managed architecture that can be both scaled and transferred easily in the cloud.

    To give you an example:
    If you use "cloud hosting" you can typically choose between AWS (Amazon Web Services), Google Cloud and co. This gives you the ability to easily up- and downscale your server according to your needs. I typically use upscaling if i know there will be big traffic because of special reasons (christmas and so on.)

    Most times those providers have a own "ecosystem" with special caching and database optimization (check out varnish, redis and memcached for example). This CAN help you using servers with less resources so you can save a decent amount of money month to month.

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